Dr. Eli Sheff, Therapeutic Issues in Kink & Consensual Non-Monogamy (5 CEs)

Dates: Friday July 6, 2018
Times: 9 AM - 4 PM
Telephone: 847-568-1100

Dr. Eli SheffJoin Kink & Poly Aware Chicago Therapists (KPACT) for an all-day therapist workshop with Dr. Elisabeth Sheff.

Dr. Sheff is one of a handful of global academic experts on polyamory, and the foremost academic expert on children in polyamorous families. She is the author of The Polyamorists Next Door: Inside Multiple-Partner Relationships and Families (2014 hardback and ebook, 2015 paperback and audiobook). The book details Sheff’s findings from the first 15 years of the Polyamorous Families Study. She’s contributed numerous posts to the LifeWorks blog.

The workshop with run from 9 AM to 4 PM, with a break for lunch.

Topics are:

Morning SessionIssues for Clients and Therapists: Counseling Consensually Non-Monogamous Clients ~ 3 Hours

This presentation explains versions of consensual non-monogamy (CNM) and identifies how they can align with different relationships and personalities. It also identifies types of non-monogamy that often don’t work, as well as issues that clients in CNM relationships often face. Finally, this presentation identifies issues that might arise for therapists who serve CNM clients. We will then break for silent reflection on family and personal history, followed by small group discussion. To close the session, we will reconvene with lecture on ways to address therapeutic issues, open up to large group discussion and address audience questions.

Learning Objectives 

At the conclusion of this program, attendees will be able to:

  1. Define consensual non-monogamies and distinguish them from non-consensual non-monogamy/cheating
  2. Describe the issues that commonly arise for clients in CNM relationships
  3. Explain the issues that tend to arise for therapists who treat clients in CNM relationships
  4. Better understand therapeutic bias and compulsory monogamy, and apply these ideas to their own personal lives and families of origin
  5. Analyze how compulsory monogamy and bias impacts therapeutic training and practice
  6. Discuss issues relevant to therapy and CNM with clients and other therapists


Afternoon Session ~ Distinguishing Between Intimate Partner Violence and Kinky Sex/BDSM ~ 2 Hours

This presentation introduces and explains kink/BDSM, intimate partner violence (IPV) and the important difference between the two. It also explains what kinky relationships and interactions might be like and explores consent. We will close with time for audience questions.

Learning Objectives 

At the conclusion of this program, attendees will be able to:

  1. List important elements of kink/BDSM
  2. List important elements of intimate partner violence
  3. Compare kinky sex with intimate partner violence and explain the similarities and differences between them
  4. Explain changes to diagnoses of kink/paraphilias
  5. Predict situations, behaviors and explanations that might indicate a client could be at risk of IPV, whether within or outside of a kinky relationship


Please email [email protected] for more details.

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Location: TBD